JAKARTA, Nov. 23 (Xinhuanet) -- The Indonesian government will set up a special
task force in December at the latest to integrate information regarding the bird
flu epidemic that broke out in the country in July, an official said here on
"This service is to be formed to integrate officials' statements so that
they will not make people even confused or uncertain," Antara news agency quoted
the secretary to coordinating minister for people's welfare, Sutedjo Yuwono, as
He said the new service was aimed at providing as much information as
possible regarding bird flu in the country to the people including prevention
The service would be manned by officials from various professional
organizations and offices concerned and would become the only gate for
information on bird flu, said the official.
He said the government was also planning to cooperate with academic
institutions to spread information on bird flu and its prevention efforts.
Until Monday, the Health Ministry has received reports on 178 suspected bird
flu cases in the country but 112 of the cases poved to be negative.
He said 11 cases had been confirmed positive of bird flu and seven of them
had led to death.
He said 54 other cases were currently still being examined and 20 patients
with suspected bird flu had died.
The cases spread in 11 provinces namely Jakarta, Banten, West Java, Central
Java, East Java, North Sumatra, East Kalimantan, South Sulawesi, Lampung,
Yogyakarta and Bali.
The Indonesian government had so far designated 44 hospitals for suspected
bird flu patients to be referred to and the number would be increased to 100 in
an effort to deal with the problem.
He said the government had also prepared a laboratory to test bird flu virus and actively cooperated with international institutions to deal with it. Meanwhile, the government had also allocated special funds for it, he added. Enditem